Fleetwood’s crown jewel was the building of the North Euston Hotel! A fine semi-circular building overlooking Morecambe Bay and the River Wyre Estuary.
The hotel was commissioned and paid for by Sir Peter Hesketh Fleetwood and designed by the London Architect Decimus Burton. Built to serve overnight guests making the rail journey from London Euston at a point close to the departure of the steamers to Scotland. Travellers would have to alight at Fleetwood and take the sea ferry to Ardrossan and then travel by rail to Glasgow as they were not able to put a railway over the Shap Hills. Fleetwood at that point was the most Northern station hence the name “North Euston”. This journey was made by Queen Victoria in 1847 when she visited the hotel.
Work began on the building in 1839 and was completed in 1841.
The original building extended over the land where the Magistrates Court is now and that was the main entrance. At this end of the hotel was a public bath house which was rarely used due to the rising trend in sea bathing. There was also a jetty for the use of hotel guests. All these things were demolished before 1900.
The first manager was Xenon Vantini, a Corsican who had been a courier for Napoleon. He was also the first person to open a station refreshment room at Wolverhampton. He had previously managed the Victoria Hotel in London.
The next manager, Mary Sharples could not boost the hotel’s fortunes so in 1859 it was sold to the government as a school of musketry and was known as Euston Barracks. This was in turn converted into Officers’ quarters in 1867.
In the 1890’s a group of London businessmen bought the property and converted it back into a hotel, adding a second floor of bedrooms and making the building into the size it is today. Rooms at that time cost 21 shillings for a weekend. Last century the hotel was owned by various people including Scottish & Newcastle Brewers, a group of Arab businessmen, then two local families in 1980, Mr & Mrs Johns and Mr & Mrs Cowpe who sold it to The Elizabeth Hotel Group. In 2009 the Spearman family from St.Annes bought the hotel and are dedicated to bringing the hotel facilities up to date without disturbing the charm of this stunning building. The hotel currently consists of 53 bedrooms including 3 suites, restaurant, public bar and four function/meeting rooms (including a magnificent ballroom).